Alternatives to Birthday Cake
Celebrating birthdays without a cake
Got a birthday party coming? You could do a big, traditional cake-- or you can do something a little more modern and unexpected. Cakes are still a classing, but sometimes lugging a big cake to a party venue or storing it in the fridge until party time can be a pain. But cake is not your only alternative! If you need something easier to handle, healthier or just more exciting, there are many other options. Next time you're planning a party, try one of these tasty substitutes to cake.
How can you go wrong with mini-cakes? Cupcakes give you all the convenience of regular cake-- you can mix and match your favorite flavors of cake and frosting, fill them and decorate them festively. But cupcakes come in a smaller, more convenient package. They're easier to handle, store and the single sized servings make them very convenient to pass out-- no cutting required. Best of all, you can serve several different flavors at a single party.
For a load of flavor packed into a little bite, try cake pops. Cake pops are the new wave of dessert treats in the baking world. The process involves baking and crumbling cake, mixing with frosting, molding it into shapes and dipping it in candy coating that hardens. You can decorate these little babies in a variety of fun and creative ways. Surprise your guests with a unique cake pop display.
Cute Birthday Cake Pops
Looking for something a little more on the healthy side? How about a lovely, fresh, fruity pizza as an alternative to a cake? Fruit pizzas are easy to make— all they take is a pizza pan and cookie or sweetened biscuit dough makes the “crust”. Once cool, just top it with a little bit of frosting, whipped cream or chocolate. Top it off with an assortment of sliced, ripe, seasonal fruit and berries. Kids will love it, and it’s a great choice for a summer party or an outdoor party like a picnic or barbecue.
Instead of cake—go for cookies and milk— especially for a kid’s birthday part. Giant cookies are available at many bakeries, but they are also easy to bake yourself on a pizza pan. Use your favorite recipe or even a pre-packaged tube of cookie dough in the refrigerator section of your grocery store. Some cake decorating icing tubes or tinted royal icing with a piping bag is all you need to decorate them in fun and creative ways.
Ice Cream Cake
A cool and refreshing alternative to cake is the old stand-by of ice cream cake. Ice cream cakes are sold at ice cream shops and grocery stores, but you can also make your own with a spring form cake pan mold. It helps to line the outside of the pan with foil to catch drips. Allow your favorite flavor to become soft, but not too melted. Fill the cake pan half-way up, then sprinkle on your favorite filling: crushed cookies, chocolate chips, or fresh fruit. Add the rest of the ice cream (or a second flavor), smooth down the top with a spatula and chill it. Decorate it further with some royal icing or icing gel.
Like cupcakes, donuts make a great single-serving option to replace a full-sized cake. Also like cupcakes, you can get a wide assortment of different donuts that will please all of your guests. Make them fancy—stack them up pyramid-style onto a lovely platter.
Adults especially may prefer the creamy richness of a cheesecake as opposed to a traditional birthday cake—after all, what can be more decadent or worth the indulgence on a special occasion? There’s no reason not to think outside the box. Pipe your message in melted chocolate onto the face of the cheesecake to write your birthday method. Decorate the edges with fresh fruit.
In a Pinch
Maybe you forgot the cake, or you dropped it on the way to the venue. Maybe you’ve forgotten it’s someone’s birthday, and they’re on their way. Get creative in a pinch— top at a drug store or gas station and pick up a stack of snack foods. Grab some Twinkies, Hostess cupcakes and cinnamon rolls. Stack them up, pyramid-style, on a plate or a platter for a last-minute, quick and easy birthday cake replacement
The point is, whether you have all the time in the world, or are in a heated rush— there’s no need to be boring and conventional. You can make do with what you have, and create something very exciting for a great birthday party celebration.
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